With interest growing around hybrid and touchscreen devices, Lenovo is expanding its range of Windows 8 touch-enabled tablets and laptops.
Lenovo Thursday unveiled the Miix tablet. Running on Windows 8, the Miix comes with an Intel Atom dual-core processor and boasts a 10.1-inch screen with 1,366-x-768 resolution. Using its detachable folio case with built-in keyboard, the hybrid-like product can act as a laptop.
The Miix boasts up to 10 hours of battery life and comes equipped with 64 GB of built-in eMMC storage, with a microSD slot for 32 GB of expandable memory. Weighing 1.2 pounds and measuring 0.4 inches thin, the Miix also includes Bluetooth 4.0 and Wi-Fi, with an optional 3G-GPS connectivity. Pricing for the Miix starts at $500, with availability scheduled for this summer.
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Lenovo previously introduced hybrid models like the ThinkPad Helix and IdeaPad Yoga. In the past, Lenovo has launched Android tablets, but now the company is making a stronger push toward Windows 8 touch devices.
To that point, Lenovo has launched five new "touch-enabled" Windows 8 laptops for its consumer-oriented IdeaPad line. The company's S series and U series include the thin and lightweight S400 Touch, S500 Touch, S210 Touch, U330 Touch and U430 Touch.
From Lenovo's S series, the three laptops are 0.8 inches thin, weigh just 3 pounds and are configured with third-generation Intel Core processors. The IdeaPad S400 and S500 Touch laptops come equipped with Intel Core i5 processors and, respectively, have 14-inch and 15.6-inch HD display screens. The IdeaPad S210 is equipped with an 11.6-inch HD screen and Intel Core i3 processor. Available this summer, the S210 will be priced at $429, the S400 at $449 and the S500 at $579.
Lenovo's U series laptops features its 0.77-inch thin Ultrabooks, the U330 Touch and U430 Touch, both of which come with Intel's latest fourth-generation Core i7 processor, with the option to equip Nvidia GeForce graphics. The U330 has a 13.3-inch display screen, while the U430 is slightly larger at 14-inches. Both offer HD or FHD display. Also scheduled to his shelves this summer, the U330 will be available for $799, and the U430 will be available for $899.
Joe Lore, sales director of at Sunnytech, a Lenovo partner based in Woburn, Mass., believes the tablet-notebook hybrid device trend is here to stay. The ability to attach a keyboard to a tablet allows these hybrid devices to be multifunctional, Lore said.
"I believe they are big sellers in the commercial market and have proven their popularity," said Lore. "It has the convenience of a tablet or a laptop to type up a Word document."
Lenovo's IdeaPad line primarily targets consumers while its ThinkPad line is more business-focused. However, with the consumerization of IT, the lines are blurring.
"You have people that are doing BYOD at their companies, and when a company doesn't want to spend $1,800 on a [Lenovo] Helix, the employee is willing to pay for it," said Lore. "The employee is happy because he can do his work, log into his network but also have it for personal use."
Lore believes that Lenovo will be successful with tablet and touchscreen devices, given its established success in the traditional PC market.
"The hybrid devices are great because it combines technology and keeps costs down," said Lore. "It allows you to decide to use one device in more than one place. I hope to see increased demands from schools and the corporate environment."
PUBLISHED JUNE 21, 2013